SIKESTON, Mo. (KFVS) - Fighting snow and ice is a messy business.
That mess can make its way into your drinking water.
But, there are steps we can all take to reduce the number of pollutants in the storm water sewers.
“A lot of litter gets in our storm water,” said Darren Martin.
Darren Martin is the Storm Water Coordinator for Sikeston Public Works.
He said every five years the city has to obtain a permit to discharge storm water in to the bigger bodies of water in the county.
However, they must do one thing.
“We have to develop a storm water management plan,” said Martin.
This plan includes educating the public on dangers of pollution in the storm water.
“They see it roll down the street and it goes into the drain, out of sight and out of mind, and it doesn’t end there with us,” said Martin.
Storm water is often used for drinking and recreational use.
With the recent weather we’ve had, polluted water may appear more than usual.
“If you have a leaky vehicle that’s leaking a lot of oil and you park it in the snow, that going to melt and that’s going to run right off into the storm drain somewhere,” said Martin.
The same salt to treat the roads can contaminate your drinking water and fresh water fish.
Martin explained when snow and ice melt, this salt washes in the sewers and other bodies of water.
“The snow is going to carry the pollution with it. The snow is going to melt and it’s going to make its way to the storm water drains” said Martin.
Your normal day to day activities also have a bigger effect than you may think.
“Even little things like people blowing the grass out on the street,” said Martin.
He told Channel 12 its important for the public and city workers do their part.
“We need to be doing what we preach,” said Martin.
Martin said the storm sewer renewal will begin in 2022.